29 Smelters Go Conflict Free, More Help from Aerospace Companies Needed

From Enough blogs Tue Dec 11 2012, 13:42:25

Last week, the electronics industry updated its list of audited conflict-free smelters to 29. This is up from 11 smelters in the Conflict-Free Smelter program, or CFS, at the start of 2012-nearly tripling the size of the program over the past year. The smelters were audited by independent auditors chosen by the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition-Global-eSustainability Initiative, or EICC-GeSI, Audit Review Committee, which includes HP, Motorola Solutions, a non-industry academic, and a handful of other companies.

This is a particularly important topic, because smelters are the key chokepoint in the conflict minerals supply chain, with only 151 main smelters worldwide, according to EICC-GeSI. Smelters know where their minerals come from, so having conflict-free smelters is critical to ensuring that we as consumers can buy conflict-free products.

Getting to 29 marks tremendous progress, as only a handful of smelters had been audited by this time last year. Of particular significance, smelters outside the tantalum industry are getting audited-there are now 11 compliant gold refiners and three compliant tin smelters. This is important, because those industries do not have as many customers in the electronics sector, meaning that the word about going conflict-free is spreading to many industries.

But there is still much work to be done: no tungsten smelters have been audited, and more than a dozen more tin smelters are needed to gain a critical mass in that sector. To make this happen, the aerospace industry, a huge user of tungsten and tin products, can play a bigger role. For example, tungsten is used in blades of airplanes. In particular, aerospace companies such as Boeing or Lockheed Martin should signal to their suppliers that they should only be sourcing from conflict-free smelters. Apple, Philips, HP, and a handful of companies have already set this policy in place, but it would make a big ...

[view whole blog post ]
 See More    |     Report Abuse

You might also be interested in the following news stories:

Africa:   Over 30 Years of HIV: What We've Learned and the Road Ahead (guest column)
1 December 2015

As someone who has been involved in HIV/AIDS prevention and control for years, I vividly remember a time the epidemic seemed unsolvable, globally and in Africa. [read more]

Burkina Faso:   Kabore Elected President of Burkina Faso in Milestone Election (news)
Deutsche Welle
1 December 2015

Roch Marc Christian Kabore has won Burkina Faso's presidential election, officials said. The result follows a year of turmoil that saw the West African country's former leader deposed, and the ... [read more]

Ethiopia:   Is Addis Covering Up a Famine? (analysis)
Untold Stories
1 December 2015

Birtukan Ali, a woman living in a rural district in Ethiopia, became a sensation following BBC's report about the ongoing drought and famine. The report, which aired on November 10 2015, sparked a new ... [read more]

blogAfrica is allAfrica.com's platform to help you keep an ear on the African blogosphere. We draw diverse voices from around the world who post regularly and insightfully about African issues. Bloggers, submit your blog's rss-feed!

Today's Featured News
Mozambique Ruling Party Faces Tough Contest

Renamo supporters: Ruling Frelimo faces a stern challenge at Wednesday's polls from...

Surge in Central African Republic Violence

African Union troops in Bangui (file photo): The UN has expressed alarm...

Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana Get Crucial Wins

Asamoah Gyan of Ghana (file photo): The Super Eagles have boosted their...